BACKYARD BROADCASTING, LOCAL NEWS OCTOBER 27, 2021

LYCOMING COUNTY COMMISSIONERS LEND A HAND TO A BOROUGH IN NEED

They attempted to complete the project without asking for additional help. However, the borough of Lairdsville asked the Lycoming County Commissioners for assistance with their new mandated sewage project. Following their $1.1 million stortfalls, which included COVID and the increasing price of steel, the assistance will go a long way. With the assistance of a $500,000 grant and upwards of $700,000 in loans (repayable  over 15 years at 0% interest), the borough of Lairdsville was successful in finding ways to reach the goals of a state mandated sewage system without placing additional burdens on their taxpayers. The vote was yes from the Commissioners was unanimous to help with the project.

FEDERAL LAWSUIT IN U.S. MIDDLE DISTRICT COURT

A federal lawsuit in U.S. Middle District Court alleges, a Lycoming County woman suffered racial slurs by a co-worker. As a woman of Asian descent, Ruth Charles, a former clerk in the office of District Attorney Ryan Gardner, had filed for a civil action suit, even naming Gardner and Lycoming County.  Charles claims she suffered from acts of discrimination, an unsafe workplace due to retaliation issues and more. According to SUN Gazette, Charles has requested Chief Middle District Judge Matthew W. Brann to oversee proceedings in front of a jury.

FIRE SCARE FOR LOCAL MAN

A smoldering fire in his bathroom set off a smoke alarm around 12:15 am, yesterday.  As reported by SUN Gazette, Myron Cowher called 911 and fire crews arrived at 2818 Route 14 to find a light smoke condition. Fire crews from Ralston, Hepburn and Old Lycoming Townships reported the fire under control within 15 minutes.

UPDATED COVID-19 NUMBERS FOR OUR AREA

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Tuesday reported new COVID-19 cases statewide. In Clinton County 14 new cases were reported, Centre County saw an increase of 32, while Lycoming County increased by 56. Tioga County had 10 new cases, 27 in both Northumberland and Union counties, 15 in Snyder and six in Montour.

CONTRACT AWARDED DANVILLE AREA SCHOOL DISTRICT

A contract agreement was reached last night in the Danville Area School District. KCBA Architects, of Center Valley, was awarded the contract upwards of $4.7 million in renovations for Liberty Valley Intermediate School and Danville Primary School. According to the Danville Area School District Business Manager, Bobbi Ely, the school board, in September, had approved an $8.8 million bond. The work inside Liberty Valley will include heating, ventilation and air conditioning upgrades and improvements. According to the Daily Item, the sidewalks were also an issue, as well as the roof and moisture complaints with the flooring.

MEN PICKED UP BY FBI ON ORDER BY FEDERAL JUDGE

Three men were taken into custody by FBI agents last week, on the orders of a Federal Judge, based on charges of attempting to entice a minor into committing acts of sexual activity and prostitution. According to PennLive and online court documents, Erick D. Metzger, Frank A. Nork and Patrick Taylor are accused engaging in the crime in Union County on either Oct. 21 or Oct. 23. Magistrate Judge William Arbuckle ordered their detention with little to no further details available at this time.

SUNBURY WOMAN MISSING,, POLICE ARE ASKING FOR HELP

State police are actively investigating a Sunbury woman who has been missing since April 2020. Angel Donahue of South 4th Street, has been missing by relatives. State police are assisting in the investigation who said Donahue’s social media and bank accounts remain inactive since April 2020. According to a warrant, Donahue isn’t listed as being in an local hospitals. Troopers said Donahue is missing under suspicious circumstances, as reported by the Daily Item.

STATE PRISON FOR SUNBURY MAN

Drug and gun charges from an incident in Snyder County land a Sunbury man in state prison. Snyder County District Attorney announced yesterday  Maurice Doster was sentenced four to 10 years in state prison  and later convicted on drug charges and unlawful possession of a firearm by a former felon. According to an online news source, Doster is required to serve a minimum of four years before he is eligible for parole.

ATTEMPTED BREAK-INS IN MONTOURSVILLE

A man from South Williamsport attempted to break into a school and a local floral business. According to northcentralpa.com, Michael Campbell attempted entrance in the Montoursville Area High School by pounding on the front doors. When he was unsuccessful, he jumped a fence and did enter the complex via the football field. According to reports, he then allegedly attempted to get into Nevil’s Flowers at 748 Broad Street. He was apprehended without gaining entry and faces multiple misdemeanors. Originally arraigned in front of District Justice Aaron Biichle, Campbell posted $10,000 bail with a preliminary hearing set for Nov. 10 in front of District Justice Gary A. Whiteman.

BACKYARD BROADCASTING, LOCAL NEWS OCTOBER 26, 2021

REDRAWING THE COMMONWEALTH

The approval was given in a vote 4-1, by the five-person commission assigned the task of redrawing Pennsylvania General Assembly district lines. The vote yesterday was the approval to adjust and validate census-based data they will use to craft preliminary maps over the coming months. However, as reported by SUN Gazette, it shifts just under 27,000 state prison inmates back to their home districts for the maps.

COVID-19 TESTING WHERE STATE LAB IS QUESTIONED

As COVID-19 testing continues to be a crucial component of tracking the impact of the virus on Pennsylvanians, state legislative leaders are requesting access and an explanation of testing processes at the Pennsylvania Department of Health Bureau of Laboratories. In a letter to Acting Secretary of Health Alison Beam, multiple State Representatives noted,  “With the continued importance of COVID-19 testing in mind, we note that according to testing reports that are required as part of Act 70 of 2020, testing efforts appear to have been hampered for over a year. The reports consistently state, ‘The State Laboratory is currently a limiting factor.’

OPENING DAY OF TROUT

The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) established a single, statewide Opening Day of Trout Season that will occur annually on the first Saturday in April beginning in 2022.  A single, statewide Mentored Youth Trout Day will now occur one week prior to the regular statewide opening day. Based on this announcement, anglers should plan around the following dates for the 2022 trout season:

  • Saturday, March 26, 2022 – Statewide Mentored Youth Trout Day
  • Saturday, April 2, 2022 – Statewide Opening Day of Trout Season

UPDATED COVID-19 NUMBERS FOR LOCAL AREA

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Monday reported new, PA –COVID-19 cases statewide, the lowest one-day total since Aug. 30 and the fifth straight day the number of cases has declined. In Clinton County 18 new cases were reported, Centre County saw an increase of 13, while Lycoming County increased by 55, there were 27 in Tioga County,  21 in Northumberland County, 16 in Union, a dozen in Snyder and one in Montour.

LOCK HAVEN MAN FACES NEW CHARGES

It was a Lock Haven man who was previously charged with the break-in that occurred at the Kelly Township Weis Market on October 17. He now faces three additional sets of criminal charges.  Cody Stern held on $50,000 cash bail was arraigned Friday and then returned to union county prison with a new combined $75,000 cash bail for three new cases. According to complaints, Stern was seen on video breaking into the beer bar on N Derr Dr in East Buffalo Township on Oct 17,  he also allegedly smashed a truck window and then attempted a break in at a residence. As reported by an online news agency, all charges have been filed through District Judge Jeffrey Rowe’s Office.

GRANT AWARDED TO HELP ERASE VACCINE-HESITANCY

The Lycoming County United Way is taking steps to face the issues of vaccine-hesitancy in the community. A $100,000 grant from Temple University will go a long way to helping them reach their goals. According to Ron Frick, CEO of Lycoming County United Way, “It’s trauma-informed.”  According to SUN Gazettem Frick  goes on to say we’re not going to go out and be judgmental. We’re going to provide facts, statistics and testimonials.

DISORDERLY AND DANGEROUS

He was set on harming himself and was already facing charges of assaulting a member of the UPMC Williamsport medical staff and a hospital security officer. Ty William Nicholls Williamsport screamed, while a Penn College officer placed him into custody in the 1300 block of Park Avenue in Williamsport Oct. 10. According to police, “Nicholls was very disruptive, yelling, screaming and using profanities (with) five officers were needed to control him as hospital staff placed restraints on him.” Nicholls was spitting and biting at staff and police. According to SUN Gazette, he is charged with multiple counts of aggravated assault, and arraigned before District Judge Christian Frey and released on $15,000 bail.

LOCK HAVEN POLICE HIT BY PHONE SCAM

Lock Haven police department posted word of the scam on the department’s Facebook page on Monday afternoon: We have received several calls within the last hour that someone has spoofed our phone number (570-893-5911) and telling the person that they failed to show up for federal court and now owe a large fine. The caller tells the person to go to Walmart and complete some sort of check transaction. THIS IS A SCAM. The call is not coming from the Lock Haven City Police Dept.

BACKYARD BROADCASTING, LOCAL NEWS OCTOBER 23,2021

ARREST FOLLOWING HEAD-ON CRASH

On October 5th, Blair Creek Township Police responded to a head-on collision in Berwick.  Joseph Rish, of Berwick, was arrested after fleeing the scene of the crash. Upon further investigation officers found Rish had three active DUIs.  Rish is being held at the Columbia County Prison after a judge denied him bail.  Rish faces charges of first-degree misdemeanor accidents involving death or personal injury, third-degree misdemeanor driving with a suspended license, and third-degree misdemeanor accident involving an attended vehicle, and three summary traffic offenses. (NCP)

PLANNED JAIL BREAK FAILED

A man arrested for the murder of three people earlier this year is now being arrested on charges for plotting an escape from Northumberland County Jail. Matthew Reed allegedly wrote a letter to his dad saying he wanted him to help him escape the jail during a court appearance. Reed is now being charged with felony escape and aggravated assault for his threats to law enforcement.  Reed will appear before Shamokin District Judge John Gembic on the new charges. (WKOK)

SEXUAL CHARGES ON JERSEY SHORE MAN

A Jersey Shore man has been found guilty of 48 charges related to the sexual abuse of a 12-year-old. Obadiah Moser of Jersey Shore was convicted of raping a child from the time the victim was 12 to the time he was 15.  The victim opened up about his abuse in a courtroom in front of Judge Nancy Butts.  The Judge found Moser guilty of three counts of child rape, 10 counts of unlawful contact with a minor, and several other felonies.  Moser was released on bail and is scheduled to be in court on February 17th. (NCP)

RESIGNATION OF BLOOMSBURG AREA SCHOOL DISTRICT SUPERINTENDENT

Change is on the horizon for the Bloomsburg Area School District following the recent resignation of Superintendent Dr. Donald Wheeler.  The Superintendent’s resignation was preceded by the departure of 10 teachers from the district in July.  In addition to unhappy staff and teachers, the district is also facing scrutiny for their graduate rates and inaccurate date reporting.  An investigation by the district revealed that four students, who were reported as not graduating, had in fact graduated. The district moved for Jason Moser, who is currently the Secondary Complex Executive Principal, to serve as Interim Superintendent until a replacement is found. (NCP).

FELONIES TO PARENTS FOR ENDANGERMENT

Parents in Woodward Township are facing a felony charge each after authorities said they neglected to provide medical care for a juvenile child.  Michael Kephart and Elizabeth Kephart each face a second-degree felony charge of endangering the welfare of children after an investigation found a child with a life threatening mouth infection.  The couple posted a $1,500 unsecured bail and was released from custody on Oct. 19. Both are due in court on Oct. 26 for a preliminary hearing. (NCP)

FOOTBALL AND CHEER PROGRAMS RECEIVE GRANT

Firetree Place, a nonprofit community center, recently received a $4,000 grant from the Little League for Youth Sports at the First Community Foundation Partnership of Pennsylvania.  The funds have been used to establish quality programming within their Williamsport Youth Football and Cheer programs.  The grant helps to provide speed and agility drills for the athletes at a discounted price.  If you have any questions about the Williamsport Youth Football and Cheer program, please contact Firetree Place. (NCP)

SCHOOL OPEN TO PRE-PANDEMIC ADMISSIONS

Red Rock Job Corps, a vocational school in Sullivan County, has reopened back to in person classes.  During the pandemic, Job Corps operated under restricted enrollment due to the residential aspects of the program.  With new safety measures, the decision to reopen Job Corps enrollment lifts the remaining restrictions on enrollment and restores the program to pre-pandemic admission standards.  Enrollment in this center is limited to Pennsylvania residents only. (NCP)

LOCAL COVID-19 NUMBERS FOR LOCAL AREA

The Pennsylvania Department of Health confirmed 4,496 new cases of COVID-19.  There were 82 new cases in Lycoming County, 63 in Northumberland County, 32 in Union, 21 in Snyder and 10 in Montour. (KOK/DOH)

BACKYARD BROADCASTING, LOCAL NEWS OCTOBER 24, 2021

COVID-19 UPDATE FOR LOCAL AREA

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Saturday reported new COVID-19 cases statewide. In Clinton County 30 new cases were reported on Saturday, Centre County saw an increase of 50, Tioga county saw 30, while Lycoming County increased by 85, Northumberland County 54, Union County reported 42 new cases, Snyder County added 13 new infections and Montour added 12.

BICYCLE FATALITY IN UNION COUNTY

A bicycle accident on Friday night in Union County claimed the life of a 77-year-old Lewisburg man.  According to state police at Milton, the accident happened on Colonel John Kelly Road when, around 7pm, Samuel F. Sauder was struck. He was transported to the Evangelical Community Hospital by EMS. According to the daily item, Sauder died at the hospital. State Police from Milton report the accident is under investigation.

FAILED JAIL ESCAPE

In a letter to his father, a convicted killed was preparing to escape the Northumberland County Jail. The letter, from Matthew Reed, asked his father to “ram a sheriff’s vehicle when he would leave a court appearance,” and then he would “take out the guard and two cops.” The investigation, with assistance from a search warrant, allowed troopers to intercept the letter at the local Post Office. Reed, with new charges of felony escape and aggravated assault for his threats to law enforcement,  will appear before Shamokin District Judge John Gembic. As reported by the Daily Item, Reed was convicted in June for the murders of Susan Williams, 58, James Dicken, 59, and 17-year-old John Paul Dicken, all of Snydertown.

REPRESENTATIVE’S WIFE CATCHES THE ATTENTION OF AN ETHICS WATCHDOG

 A congressional ethics watchdog has concluded there is “substantial reason to believe” that the wife of Pennsylvania Rep. Mike Kelly used nonpublic information gained through her husband’s position in Congress to purchase stock last year, a likely violation of federal law and House rules. A report from the Office of Congressional Ethics released late Thursday detailed the April 2020 purchase of stock in an Ohio steelmaker. The company had threatened to shut down a plant in Kelly’s district unless the Trump administration took action that would help make it more competitive, steps the administration took after Kelly, a Republican, and others intervened. The ethics office has recommended that subpoenas be issued for Kelly, his wife, Victoria, a senior staffer and former Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross because they declined to be interviewed or participate in the investigation.

SHE WAS HIRED TO HELP THE VICTIM, SHE ALLEGIDELY HELPED HERSELF

Missing medication spawned a call to local police in Jersey Shore. According to Tiadaghton Valley Regional Police, Autumn Roxanne Glass of Jersey Shore had access to the medication.   As reported by northcentralpa.com, Glass then gave officers the medication, allegedly admitting she removed two pills. Glass, charged with one count each of third-degree felony criminal trespassing, third-degree misdemeanor theft by unlawful taking, and third-degree misdemeanor receiving stolen property, posted $10,000 unsecured bail and will appear before Judge Jerry Leply for a preliminary hearing Oct. 27 with Judge Jerry Leply.

NEW DIRECTOR OF WILLIAMSPORT DEPARTMENT OF PUBLC WORKS

At the Williamsport City Council meeting, Scott Livermore was approved as the new director of the Department of Public Works with a paycheck of $72,000 annually. Livermore brings over 20 years’ experience in construction, highway, and scheduling to the table. The Williamsport resident also has budgeting experience. Adam Winder remains the director of transportation and general manager of River Valley Transit.

CDC BOOSTER AVAILABLE

According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are now booster recommendations for all three available COVID-19 vaccines in the United States. Eligible individuals may choose which vaccine they receive as a booster dose. Some people may have a preference for the vaccine type that they originally received, and others may prefer to get a different booster. CDC’s recommendations now allow for this type of mix and match dosing for booster shots. Millions of people are newly eligible to receive a booster shot and will benefit from additional protection. However, today’s action should not distract from the critical work of ensuring that unvaccinated people take the first step and get an initial COVID-19 vaccine. More than 65 million Americans remain unvaccinated, leaving themselves – and their children, families, loved ones, and communities– vulnerable.

GEISINGER TO PROVIDE BOOSTERS

Following recent guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Geisinger is offering booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccines for eligible individuals. Those eligible for a booster dose include people who have received their two doses of the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, and: Are 65 years and older or age 18 and older who live in long-term care settings or have underlying medical conditions or who work or live in high-risk settings.

 People can get their booster dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine beginning six months after receiving their second dose. The booster dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is half of a single dose (0.25 milliliters). The booster dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is the same dosage (0.3 milliliters) as a single dose.

GOVERNOR RECOGNIZES HARDWORKING PENNSYLVANIANS

Governor Tom Wolf believes that hardworking Pennsylvanians deserve fair wages, paid sick leave, safe workplaces and quality jobs. Recently, the governor visited Delaware County to outline his workforce plan to benefit workers across the state, including an executive order issued yesterday, and a call on the legislature to finally pass several bills that help working families.

LOOKING FOR BUS DRIVERS IN COMMONWEALTH

PennDOT Deputy Secretary Kurt Myers and Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) Secretary Dr. Noe Ortega today joined the Pennsylvania School Bus Association to encourage interested individuals to obtain Commercial Driver’s License to address bus driver shortage in Pennsylvania. To address the shortage, PennDOT mailed a letter from PDE reaching out to approximately 376,000 individuals with Commercial Driver’s Licenses (CDL) to help connect interested drivers with school entities. The letter included information for a survey linkOpens In A New Window for individuals who had an interest in exploring employment opportunities.

BACKYARD BROADCASTING, LOCAL NEWS OCTOBER 25, 2021

UPDATED COVID-19 NUMBERS FROM OUR AREA

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Sunday reported new COVID-19 cases statewide. In Clinton County 18 new cases were reported, Centre County saw an increase of 51, while Lycoming County increased by 63, Tioga had 12, 40 in Northumberland County, 18 in Union, seven in Montour and two in Snyder.

SNAPCHAT POST TAKEN SERIOUSLY

It was last evening when Keystone Central School District Superintendent Dr. Jacquelyn Martin alerted the news media to threats at a “Central High School.”  The post read, “Local police and Keystone Central School District Police have been made aware of a Snapchat post that included threats to students and administrators at “Central High School” by “Alex Anderson.”  Students and parents can expect an “increased police presence” on Monday at district schools. Dr. Martin reported, however, that the investigation, conducted by local police, advised her that the reported post describing a threat to a “Central High School” was not credible to this location. According to therecordonline.com, in fact, it was determined the origin appeared to be Colorado.

SATURDAY MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT UNDER INVESTIGATION

A motor vehicle accident on Saturday, on Route 15, just north of Allenwood is under an extensive investigation, as a trooper was exposed to Fentanyl. According to an online media outlet, the accident was in Gregg Township, Union County sometime around 4:30 pm. Sources reported a trooper and another individual were exposed to the drug Fentanyl and taken to the hospital. Hazmat personnel responded to help with the investigation.

A TRUSTED COUNSELOR HELPS AREA YOUTH

It was the trust of an 11-year-old with her counselor, which led to the arrest of a Jersey Shore man for indecent assault.  According to northcentralpa.com, Christopher Lawrence Nelson is being charged with multiple felony and misdemeanors. He appeared in front of Judge Jerry Lepley for his preliminary arraignment, but was released after he successfully posted $50,000 unsecured bail. His preliminary hearing is Nov. 11.

GEISINGER MEDICAL CENTER PROVIDES BOOSTER

Following recent guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Geisinger is offering booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccines for eligible individuals.Those eligible for a booster dose include people who have received their two doses of the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, and:Are 65 years and older, Are age 18 and older who live in long-term care settings or have underlying medical conditions or who work or live in high-risk settings.

You can make an appointment for a first, second, third or booster dose of the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at Geisinger through MyGeisinger or by calling 570-284-3657. Appointments are available at the vaccine centers at the Geisinger Health Plan Building near Danville. Appointments are also available at Geisinger Pharmacy locations in Danville and Lock Haven.

BICYCLE ACCIDENT FROM FRIDAY TAKES A LIFE 

A bicycle accident on Friday night in Union County claimed the life of a 77-year-old Lewisburg man.  According to state police at Milton, the accident happened on Colonel John Kelly Road when, around 7pm, Samuel F. Sauder was struck. He was transported to the Evangelical Community Hospital by EMS. According to the daily item, Sauder died at the hospital. State Police from Milton report the accident is under investigation.

FAILED JAIL ESCAPE

In a letter to his father, a convicted killed was preparing to escape the Northumberland County Jail. The letter, from Matthew Reed, asked his father to “ram a sheriff’s vehicle when he would leave a court appearance,” and then he would “take out the guard and two cops.” The investigation, with assistance from a search warrant, allowed troopers to intercept the letter at the local Post Office. Reed, with new charges of felony escape and aggravated assault for his threats to law enforcement,  will appear before Shamokin District Judge John Gembic. As reported by the Daily Item, Reed was convicted in June for the murders of Susan Williams, 58, James Dicken, 59, and 17-year-old John Paul Dicken, all of Snydertown.

PLANS TO HELP HARDWORKING PENNSYLVANIANS

Governor Tom Wolf believes that hardworking Pennsylvanians deserve fair wages, paid sick leave, safe workplaces and quality jobs. Recently, the governor visited Delaware County to outline his workforce plan to benefit workers across the state, including an executive order issued and a call on the legislature to finally pass several bills that help working families. Governor Wolf is also urging legislative action to help out-of-work Pennsylvanians. The governor supports Rep. Gerald Mullery’s HB 549, which streamlines the process for eligible Pennsylvanians to receive unemployment benefits.

CDC APPROVES MIX AND MATCH

According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are now booster recommendations for all three available COVID-19 vaccines in the United States. Eligible individuals may choose which vaccine they receive as a booster dose. Some people may have a preference for the vaccine type that they originally received, and others may prefer to get a different booster. CDC’s recommendations now allow for this type of mix and match dosing for booster shots. Millions of people are newly eligible to receive a booster shot and will benefit from additional protection. More than 65 million Americans remain unvaccinated, leaving themselves – and their children, families, loved ones, and communities– vulnerable.

WILLIAMSPORT CITY COUNCL MEETING AND RVT AUDIT

At the most recent Williamsport City Council meeting, audits from the books of River Valley Transit were reviewed. The financial issues with RVT stem beyond 2020. This causes a question from Councilwoman Bonnie Katz, asking for clarification. According to Mark Zettlemoyer, of RKL, PennDot  does a review every 3-5 years, but that only deals primarily with policy and procedures, basically, Penn Dot does not conduct the financial statement audit that was just completed by RKL. This is an independent financial audit. This explains why it is all just coming to light.

WILLIAMSPORT CITY COUNCIL AND RVT HARD QUESTIONS

Williamsport City Councilwoman Bonnie Katz asked the hard questions on Thursday at the Williamsport City Council meeting. She asked, “Who is responsible for this in the end? Does the city have to fund back to RVT?”In the end, according to Mark Zettlemoyer of the accounting firm RKL, anything done with the city, transportation funds is going to be the responsibility of the city to fund back to RVT.

A VACANCY ORDINANCE IN WILLIAMSPORT CITY

It’s a vacancy ordinance designed with owners of commercial buildings or land with little to no intention of developing them in the City of Williamsport. It was called a city It was called a Williamsport City Blighted Property Review Board Committee meeting and although no action was taken at this time, the conversation was moving towards a resolution. The process begins in the first year of vacancy when the property owner is given notice, advising them the property with a business or development plan.  In the second year, if they need to  have an actual plan and request a waiver on the first year of permitting. The first year permit fee is around $500, but it rises as the years pass by. Those at the committee meeting indicated the issue is likely to be discussed in future meetings.

GRANT MONEY FOR LYCOMING COUNTY UNITED WAY

It’s grant money that Lycoming County United Way plans to use in order to address the issue of vaccine-hesitancy in the community. According to Ron Frick, CEO of Lycoming County United Way, “It’s trauma-informed. We’re not going to go out and be judgmental. We’re going to provide facts. We’re going to provide statistics. We’re going to provide testimonials.”  It was $3.5 million in grant funding, authorized by the Health Resources and Services Administration.  Temple received the grant and then went on to select sub-recipients. United Way was chosen with goals being to prevent transmission of COVID-19, increase vaccine access and decrease vaccine hesitancy, and provide the resources communities need to mitigate the impacts of the pandemic in medically underserved urban, suburban and rural communities.

BACKYARD BROADCASTING, LOCAL NEWS OCTOBER 22, 2021

 

A FORMAL REQUEST FOR REMOVAL OF CHARGES

A former Williamsport city police officer asked a judge for charges of misconduct to be removed.  Eric Derr, of Cogan Station, the charges regarding alleged abuse of police powers and stemmed from traffic stops and a retail theft.  Charges include, but were not limited to,  unsworn falsification, obstructing, hindering apprehension and upwards of 28 unlawful use of computer charges. According to SUN Gazette, Senior Judge David Klementik, noted a verdict could be expected in the coming weeks.

RECOVERING AT HOME

After being hospitalized this week, According to Old Lycoming Township police the 4-year-old boy who was seriously injured Monday afternoon in a fall from a second-story window is recovering at home. In a police news release, the toddler fell while he was attempting to retrieve a toy. According to SUN Gazette, the toddler was taken to UPMC Williamsport and then to Geisinger Medical Center, Danville, where parents learned he had a fractured skull.

MOTORIST TAKEN TO HOSPITAL

One vehicle accident in 700 block of Northway Rd. State Police Montoursville are investigating an accident which sent one driver to the hospital via ambulance. The vehicle traveled through several yards before finding a final resting place on this tree. The noise gained attention in the  neighborhood, as the driver’s vehicle jumping the curb, crossing lawns and crashing into a tree. There was a good deal of property damage, but no injuries outside the vehicle. State police say speed may have played a role.

 

COVID-19 UPDATE LOCAL NUMBERS

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Thursday reported new COVID-19 cases statewide. In Clinton County 26 new cases were reported on Thursday, Centre County saw an increase of 44, Tioga has 20, while Lycoming County increased by 82, 46 new cases in Northumberland County. There were also 33 cases in Union County, 25 in Snyder and 10 in Montour.

THE RETURN OF THE WILLIAMSPORT SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA

After a year of live music venues closing doors and being shuttered, one of Williamsport’s premier ensembles is returning to the stage. With excitement, we announce a new season from the Williamsport Symphony Orchestra starting Tuesday, Oct. 26, 7pm at the Community Arts Center.  Fans of the orchestra have five concerts, beginning with “A Musical Celebration,” to look forward to. Single tickets can be purchased, as well as, season subscriptions by visiting caclive.com.

MONIES TO HELP IMPROVE THE SEWER PLANT

PENNVEST has recently awarded funds to the Milton Regional Sewer Authority for its project to regionalize in the Milton area. Upwards of $2,022,447 in grant money and $839,553 in low-interest loans were awarded. The money will go to two new pump stations installed to convey sewage to the Authority’s existing water treatment plant while Lewis Township’s existing plant will be decommissioned. According to a media outlet, when all is done, the project will serve 7,139 households.

JOINT COMMITTEE MOVES TO UPHOLD ACTING HEALTH SECRETARY ALISON BEAM’S AUG. 31 ORDER

A special panel within Pennsylvania’s state government, the Joint Committee on Documents, held a vote Thursday and moved to continue to uphold the validity of Acting Health Secretary Alison Beam’s Aug. 31 order by a vote of 7 to 4. The order applies to K-12 schools and child care facilities. According to a media outlet, the committee is made up of members of Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration, other executive branch officials and legislative leaders.

 

MAIL-IN OR ABSENTEE BALLOTS

Election officials remind voters that they can drop off their mail-in or absentee ballots at drop box locations, at their county election office or at other officially designated locations until 8 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 2.  In fact, Clinton County Voter Registration Director reported said that approximately 1,600 mail-in or absentee ballots have been mailed out to registered voters who requested them. According to the recordonline.com, a list of ballot-return sites is available at vote.pa.gov. The Department of State urges voters to apply today for a mail ballot and not wait, although the deadline to apply is 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 26.

 

FIVE YEAR PLAN

Its called a five year plan to improve public transportation in the county. The county multimodal strategy was approved by the Clinton County Commissioners yesterday. According to therecordonline.com, included in the plan is the work which is expected to complete the Bald Eagle Trail. That work includes, but is not limited to; the creation of a trail network; the creating of bike and walking paths with access to area secondary schools; and the creation of bike lanes.

 

GUILTY OF 48 CHARGES RELATED TO THE SEXUAL ABUSE OF A CHILD

It was upwards of 48 charges related to the sexual abuse of a 12-year-old against a Jersey Shore man. Obadiah Moser, 60, of Jersey Shore, was found guilty and convicted of raping the  child victim from the when the child was 12 to the time he was 15. Judge Nancy Butts found Moser guilty of three counts of rape of child, three of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child, 10 counts of statutory sexual assault: 11 years or older,  and many other charges.  As reported by SUN Gazette, Moser is scheduled to appear in court Feb. 17, 2022, to be sentenced for his charges.

BACKYARD BROADCASTING, LOCAL NEWS OCTOBER 21, 2021

A NEW ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF ADMISSIONS

There is a  new associate director of admissions at Pennsylvania College of Technology. Previously, Jen M. Cullin-Hetrick was the coordinator of admissions events and communications and also an admissions counselor. Now, Cullin-Hetrick has the title of associate director of admissions Penn College. According to SUN Gazette, in her position, she handles the developing and executing of communications and recruitment plans.

COVID NUMBERS DROPPING IN AREA SCHOOL DISTRICT

COVID-19 numbers have dropped in the school district, this according to District Superintendent Daphne Bowers, who released the news at the most recent meeting of the Montgomery Area School District. According to SUN Gazette, in total, 42 students and five staff members have been reportedly quarantined. The next board meeting will be at 7 p.m. Nov. 16 in the district board room.

 

COVID-19 CASES LOCALLY WEDNESDAY

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Wednesday reported new COVID-19 cases statewide. In Clinton County 25 new cases were reported, Centre County saw an increase of 25, while Lycoming County increased by 69, 40 in Northumberland County, 24 in Union, 13 in Snyder and eight in Montour.

AWAITING SENTENCING IN NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY

According to PennLive and another online media source, the drowning death of a 3-year-old boy last year in Northumberland County went to court. There, a  Northumberland County mother has been found guilty of endangering the welfare of a child. Free, pending sentencing, Britney Dawn Bridges of Turbotville, was charged in direct connection to the August 11, 2020, death of her son, Clayton-Lucas Eugene Hamilton, who was found floating face down in a neighbor’s above-ground swimming pool.

CHILDREN’S VACCINE (AGES 5-11)

Governor Tom Wolf today issued a statement on the Biden Administration’s preparations for the COVID-19 vaccine authorization for children ages 5-11. “In Pennsylvania, the vaccine is our strategy out of the pandemic, and Pennsylvanians are doing a tremendous job of protecting ourselves and our loved ones by getting the COVID-19 vaccine. We should all be proud of how far we have come since the beginning of the pandemic as another milestone is upon us – the vaccine authorization for children ages 5-11.

THEFT OF TREE CUTTING EQUIPMENT FROM CLINTON COUNTY

On Oct 7 at approx. 7:58 am, State Police were contacted to report a theft of chainsaws, other tree trimming equip and climbing equip. The theft occurred from the parking lot of 2109 Nittany Valley Dr (penndot parking lot), Bald Eagle Twp, Clinton County.  The thefts occurred over a two day period. Video surveillance was requested from the surrounding area. Anyone with any information is asked to contact State Police in Lamar.

ROLLING ROADBLOCKS

Motorists who travel Interstate 180 eastbound and westbound in Loyalsock, Fairfield, and Muncy Townships, and the City of Williamsport, Lycoming County, are advised of rolling roadblocks  Monday, October 25 through Thursday, October 28, a Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) contractor will place traffic counters along Interstate 180 at multiple locations between the Interstate 180 and Route 15 southbound interchange in the City of Williamsport and the Route 220 interchange in Muncy Township.

Motorists can expect multiple 15-minute rolling roadblocks in the City of Williamsport, Loyalsock, Fairfield, and Muncy Townships where work is being performed. Work will be performed between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., weather permitting

APPEALS ARGUMENT HEARD BY PA APPEALS COURT YESTERDAY

AP is reporting… A Pennsylvania appeals court yesterday heard arguments Wednesday on if the Wolf administration had the legal right to impose a mask mandate on K-12 schools and child care facilities.  The state’s acting health secretary ordered students, teachers and staff to wear face coverings when inside, which has reversed an earlier pledge from  Gov. Tom Wolf saying masking in schools would remain a local decision.  Commonwealth Court is set to decide on a pair of lawsuits filed by parents who have contended the  masks interfere with their children’s breathing and actually cause other problems. The plaintiffs include the GOP leader of the state Senate, Jake Corman, State Representative from Centre County.

PRESS CONFERENCE INVOLVING NATURAL GAS IN PENNSYLVANIA

Senators Camera Bartolotta (R-46), Gene Yaw (R-23) and John Yudichak (I-14) joined Jim Gallagher with Steamfitters Local 420 and Matt Toomey with International Union of Operating Engineers Local 542 to discuss the need for responsible natural gas infrastructure. Senator Gene Yaw speaks to what he learned from Dr. Scott Tinker of the University of Texas …With United States households already projected to see heating bills jump as much as 54 percent compared to last winter, speakers warned how the ill-conceived call for a moratorium on natural gas development will not only increase energy costs on consumers but be detrimental for the environment and good-paying jobs across the Commonwealth.

BACKYARD BROADCASTING, OCTOBER 19, 2021

NEARING COURT DATE

A homicide hearing is nearing and last week the case came to Union County Court. The case in question, a homicide case against a truck driver accused of killing and dumping the body of a former model in February. Union County Public Defender Brian Ulmer, representing the accused, Tracy Ray Rollins Jr., wants a psychological evaluation of his client. According to northcentralpa.com, Union County District Attorney, Pete Johnson, has not  received any such  motion. The case is set to begin sometime in 2022.

ATTACK AT YWCA

A man attacked a woman at the YWCA. According to Williamsport Bureau of Police, Darryl Eugene Beck of Williamsport, inside an affidavit of probable cause, allegedly forced his way into a bathroom with a woman at the YWCA. Once there, Beck pulled his pants down, attempting to strong arm a woman into performing a sexual act on him. According to a media outlet, Beck has been charged with multiple first and second-degree misdemeanors with no bail listed at the time.

MISSINGING SNYDER COUNTY MAN

Pennsylvania State Police at Selinsgrove are investigating a missing person report for a Snyder County man who has been missing since Saturday. Joshua Young, 34, of Monroe Township, was last seen on foot at 2 p.m. Oct. 16 at his residence at 3115 Kratzerville Road. He was seen wearing a white tank top, tan shorts, black sneakers. Young is described as being 6’3″ tall, weight 210 lbs. with brown eyes, long brown hair and a brown beard. As reported by northcentralpacom, anyone with information about his whereabouts should contact PSP Selinsgrove at (570) 374-8145.

COVID-19 UPDATED MONDAY RESULTS

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Monday reported new COVID-19 cases statewide. In Clinton County 10 new cases were reported, Centre County saw an increase of 21, while Lycoming County increased by 78, 33 new cases in Northumberland County, 20 in Snyder, 13 in Union and nine in Montour.

FLAG ORDER HITS HOME

In accordance with the recent Presidential Flag Order, Governor Tom Wolf ordered United States and commonwealth flags on all commonwealth facilities, public buildings and grounds to fly at half-staff immediately in honor of the General Colin Powell. General Powell passed away yesterday. “General Powell was a trailblazer,” said Gov. Wolf. “As a public servant, he dedicated his life to our nation. I extend my deepest condolences to his friends and family.” The US and commonwealth flags should be lowered to half-staff at immediately and should fly at half-staff until sunset on October 22, 2021. According to northentralpa.com, all Pennsylvanians are invited to participate in this tribute.

WOLF’S FOUR-BILL PACKAGE

Governor Tom Wolf today unveiled a four-bill package that will further strengthen protections for students and combat sexual assaults on campuses. The governor has made Pennsylvania a national leader in addressing sexual violence and changing the culture on campuses across the state. The governor’s four-bill package would: Enact a ‘yes means yes’ law, strengthen protections for victims of on-campus crime, teach middle and high school students to know and prevent dating violence, sexual assault, sexual harassment and stalking and create a task force to study sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence and stalking in grades 6-12 and postsecondary institutions.

PRESS CONFERENCE TOMORROW

PA Senators Camera Bartolotta (R-46), Gene Yaw (R-23) and John Yudichak (I-14) will hold a press conference to discuss the need for responsible natural gas infrastructure and the good-paying jobs and lower energy costs associated with it on Wednesday, October 20, 2021 at 10 a.m. in the Main Capitol Rotunda. (pasen.gov)

Speakers will also include representatives from Pennsylvania’s esteemed building trade unions.

CHILD IN STABLE CONDITION AT UPMC

A toddler fell from a 2nd story window onto concrete below. According to a press release from the Old Lycoming Township Police, Yesterday at 12:50 PM, Old Lycoming Twp. Police Department, Old Lycoming Township Fire Department and UPMC EMS were dispatched the 2000 block of Mill Ln  in Old Lycoming Township. Police arrived on scene and learned that a 4-year-old child was upstairs playing with siblings when the child fell. Police, fire and EMS administered aid and the child was subsequently transported to UPMC Susquehanna Williamsport Emergency Department. Further police investigation revealed that the child fell out the window when he was attempting to retrieve a toy. 911 was called immediately. The child is in stable condition at UPMC.

CITY BUS FACELIFT HIGHLIGHTS AREA ATHLETES

If you look at the next City Bus, you may see 10 of Lycoming County’s hard-working athletes, they are soccer players, swimmers, basketball players, bowlers, powerlifters and more. According to SUN Gazette, they are Lycoming County’s Special Olympians. Unveiled Sunday, River Valley Transit featured the 10 athletes on a bright red bus wrap.

FROM WILLIAMSPORT TO CHAMONIX, FRANCE

Thomas McNerney, a Williamsport native, was in Chamonix, France, as part of the Ultra Mont Blanc race that goes through the countries of France, Switzerland and Italy. Competitors will have 46 1/2 hours and McNerney finished the race in 44 hours, on just 10 minutes of total sleep watching two sunsets and even two sunrises while running, according to SUN Gazette.

POLICE VEHICLES REQUIRE REPLACEMENT

The Williamsport Bureau of Police has an immediate need to replace four police vehicles, according to Mayor Derek Slaughter, who goes on to say, “The lack of operational police vehicles is now threatening public safety.” As reported by the SUN Gazette, Mayor Slaughter has exercised mayor’s powers in the Third-Class City Code in order to declare a state of emergency within the city due to a  lack of operational police vehicles. “I am therefore temporarily suspending the advertising and bidding requirements for the purchase and upfitting of up to four police SUVs by the bureau.”

THREATS IN LOYALSOCK TOWNSHIP

Robert Pellacore, 32, of 320 Center St., has been jailed on charges of threats he made allegedly to  an employee at Rival’s, 420 River Ave., during a reported disturbance at the Loyalsock Township business about 1:15 p.m. on Oct. 14. As reported by SUN Gazette, arraigned before District Judge William Solomon on multiple charges and committed to the Lycoming County Prison in lieu of $15,000 bail.

911 TEXTING IN UNION COUNTY

“Call if you can, text if you can’t” is the slogan used by the Central Susquehanna Regional 911, servicing Union, Snyder and parts of Northumberland Counties. According to Briggon Bobb, executive director, text-to-911 went live over two weeks ago. She alwos went on to say it works great in areas with poor cellphone service, when a call is dropped, texting is said to get the message through. According to an online media outlet, if you are in Snyder or Union County, experiencing an emergency, you can send a text message to “911.”

BACKYARD BROADCASTING, LOCAL NEWS OCTOBER 20, 2021

CLEAN WATER ACTION PLAN

Lycoming County’s Clean Water Action Plan offers a way to proactively address flooding and pollution that affects county farms and homes with increasing occurrences. The price tag, however, is $36.7 million. According to Eve Adrian, the county’s natural resources planner and the plan’s coordinator, the cost of resources needed to implement the plan will be grant-funded who presented the plan to the Lycoming County Commissioners at their Tuesday meeting. Adrian stressed Lycoming County has endured severe rainfalls over several decades, “the unfortunate reality is that without mitigation, farmers pay the cost of these intense rain events because soil has value.” According to SUN Gazette, the plan is being implemented, set to start this month and run through 2025.

UPMC HOSPITALS AFFECTED BY COVID

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues across the country, hospitals are seeing spikes in cases of patients being admitted because of pre-existing conditions, many of which have gone without medical care over the course of the pandemic. According to SUN Gazette, Dr. Michael C. Gerst, chief medical officer of emergency services for the North Central Region, UPMC says,“We have a population that was concerned and frightened to come to the hospital, to perhaps go see their doctor, or come to the E.R. when they were experiencing certain symptoms, so they put it off,” he said. “Putting it off has allowed that disease process to progress and become more significant and by the time they must come to the E.R., they are very, very sick.”

 

UPMC HOSPITALS REPORTING EMERGENCY ROOMS BUSY

According to Sun Gazette,  Dr. Michael C. Gerst, chief medical officer of emergency services for the North Central Region, UPMC, stresses the emergency room is not a “convenience.” “One of the things we would really appreciate in the emergency department… (is) responsibility in seeking out these services. They are time consuming, they are expensive and we are currently managing a lot of sick people,” Gerst said. “So if you can get the same at your private care physician or an urgent care, that would be optimal versus going to the E.R. where we are taking care of the sickest of the sick in the community currently.”

RETAINING WALL DELAY

The state Department of Transportation says a retaining wall project along Little Pine Creek Road in Cummings Township has delays. The project began April of 2021 and is located along Pine Creek Road. As reported by SUN Gazette, less than a mile north of the intersection of Route 44 and Little Pine Creek Road, are unforeseeable delays. These delays are due to subsurface rock quality conditions, a news release from PennDOT said, and will delay the completion until September of 2022.

MURDER DENIED MOTIONS

I-Keem Fogan, convicted murderer, was denied multiple motions by  Judge Marc Lovecchio which could have granted him a new trial in Lycoming County Court. Fogan’s public defender, Nicole Spring, reported an appeal is set to be filed on Fogan’s behalf within the 30-day time frame. Fogan,  convicted of the 2019 killing of a woman during an attempted robbery of a Newberry convenience store, had a trial, which started in late September and concluded in early October and ended with a life sentence and no possibility of parole.

DERR RETURNS FOR COURT

Ex-Williamsport City police officer Eric Derr was back in court yesterday, arguing  an omnibus motion before a Sr. Judge. Derr, charged with 28 felonies in connection to his alleged use of the police’s JNET system, and running 93 illegitimate searches of 28 different women from the dates of June of 2015 through December of 2019. Today’s motion centered around whether or not Derr “exceeded his authority” in terms of his use of the JNET system and whether or not a police officer was deemed a “public employee.” According to northcentralpa.com, Derr is due to return to court December 14, for a criminal pre-trial hearing.

COVID-19 NUMBERS IN OUR AREA FROM TUESDAY

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Tuesday reported new COVID-19 cases statewide. In Clinton County 11 new cases were reported, Centre County saw an increase of 22, while Lycoming County increased by 39, 17 new cases in Northumberland County, six in Union, and five in Snyder and Montour counties.

POSTING CURRICULUM ONLINE IS SET FOR A VOTE

The Center Square is reporting….. A bill that would require school districts to post curriculum online received approval from a key Senate panel on Monday. The Senate Education Committee voted along party lines to advance House Bill 1332 to the chamber floor for consideration. According to a representative from Gettysburg, “[The bill] allows parents to play a greater and more active role in the oversight of what their children are being taught and  that giving online access to the course information will help “restore trust.” But Democrats on the committee warned that unfunded mandate will further burden school staff and invite unwarranted criticism. “The curriculum plan, including textbooks, needs to be online for parents to review at any time, and those websites need to be updated each time the curriculum is revised,” he said. “Too many parents have no idea what is being taught until they see their children’s homework.

 

RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT BOOKEEPING ISSUES

“shell game” may have been played by prior management of River Valley Transit located in Williamsport and the use of state and federal grants for non-transportation purchases may have occurred, based on what auditors discovered in the fiscal books maintained by prior bus service management. According to SUN Gazette, a draft audit by RKL, the firm which was hired by Mayor Derek Slaughter, and shared yesterday at the Williamsport City Council’s finance committee. It spanned the dates of July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020 and included the notation of an “adverse opinion.”

LAWSUIT THROWN OUT REGARDING PRISON GUARDS AND VACCINE-OR-TEST

Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports…. A state appeals court has thrown out a lawsuit challenging Gov. Tom Wolf’s vaccine-or-test requirement for prison guards, among thousands of other state employees in congregate settings.  In a Sept. 28 decision, a three-judge panel of the Commonwealth Court dismissed the challenge, brought by the Pennsylvania State Correctional Officers Association, which represents 11,000 prison workers, on technical grounds. The union had requested an injunction to block the policy. According to PSCOA President John Eckenrode, “We’re disappointed and disagree with the court’s decision.”  It applies to 25,000 state employees who work in state prisons, hospitals, centers for people with disabilities, and other similar facilities.

STATE GRANTS REPORTED TO RVT

PA state grants received between 2009 and 2019, showing River Valley Transit, received $64,735,716 in department grants. According to SUN Gazette, for example, when the state Department of Transportation (PennDOT) would provide a grant, those funds are recorded as a liability until they are used for specific grant purposes and they require a local match. This is where problems were found throughout the books. Williamsport City wrote RVT a check, they then needed to get localities to pay them. The whole idea was to for RVT to provide the state with a match for the grant. RVT either went to localities and they didn’t bill them or they didn’t follow up to collect funds, which went against the state requirements for the grant.

HEARING AIDS TO MORE THAN JUST THE ELDERLY

Hearing problems are not just an elderly issue; in fact, upwards of 37 million Americans experience symptoms of hearing loss. New technologies are available to help those who want to get a hearing aid without official physician approval. According to SUN Gazette, this builds on the Biden-Harris Administration’s goal to expand access to high-quality health care and lower medical care costs for the American public.

BACKYARD BROADCASTING, LOCAL NEWS OCTOBER 18, 2021

PROJECTS SET TO BEGIN AT WILLIAMSPORT REGIONAL AIRPORT

A facelift could be in store for the Williamsport Regional Airport with a price tag of $11.1 million over the next two years. According to Airport Executive Director Richard Howell, most of the prospected projects would be funded by federal CARES dollars. According to SUN Gazette, projects discussed in the recent airport municipal authority meeting include; sewer upgrades, tower rehabilitation, repaving of taxi lanes, roofing needs and runway improvements, with the largest ticketed item being the new maintenance building at a cost of $6 million.

TWO SHOOTINGS IN SUNBURY IN CLOSE PROXIMITY OF TIME AND LOCATION

Two people are in custody following a second gun incident in Sunbury yesterday, and according to police say they have recovered a weapon at a Seventh Street home. Sunbury Police Chief Brad Hare said the latest incident is not related to an earlier incident that occurred on yesterday around 4 p.m., also on Seventh Street. Hare went on to say the latest incident occurred at 8:29 p.m. and had police in the 600 block of Seventh Street. As of last evening police were still on scene and were conducting interviews on both cases. As reported by an online media outlet, anyone with information is asked to call Northumberland County 911 and Sgt. Travis Bremigen.

COVID-19 NUMBERS LOCALLY FROM SUNDAY

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Sunday reported new COVID-19 cases statewide. In Clinton County 21 new cases were reported,Centre County saw an increase of 36, while Lycoming County increased by 29, 44 cases in Northumberland County, 10 in Snyder, seven in Union and nine in Montour.

TODAY LAST DAY TO REGISTER FOR NOV 2 ELECTION

State election officials remind voters today is the last date to register to vote in the Nov. 2 election; also that Tuesday, Oct. 26 is the last date to request a mail-in or absentee ballot. Information on registering to vote or update a registration is available on the pa.state.gov or you local county website.

 

FALSE IDENTITY TO POLICE ADDS CHARGES TO CRIMES

The woman arrested and jailed on charges of allegedly trying to set fire to a chair outside an apartment at the Victorian Gardens, 653 Hepburn St., on Friday morning will face an additional misdemeanor charge of giving a false identity to law enforcement, according to Williamsport City Police yesterday.  On Friday, when she was arrested, Tiffany Whaley, identified herself to police as Belinda Diggs. Already in the Lycoming County Prison on charges of arson endangering persons and related offenses, Whaley, 49, whose last known address is of the 600 block of Fifth Avenue, is scheduled to have a preliminary hearing before District Judge Aaron Biichle on Thursday. According to SUN Gazette, Whaley is jailed in lieu of $85,000 bail.

POLICE LOOKING FOR DRIVER/OCCUPANT OF HIT AND RUN

A sudden hit-and-run in Milton on Saturday night has police on the lookout for a missing passenger or driver. At around 8:25 p.m., a motorist hit three other automobiles in the parking lot of the Shoe Factory on Hepburn St. The driver then proceeded to exit the parking lot and strike hit a tree.  As reported by the Daily Item, although unconfirmed reports say the driver has been taken into custody, Milton Police are still looking for the second occupant of the vehicle.

HOUSE FIRE CLAIMS LIFE IN NEW COLUMBIA

A woman in New Columbia died in a house fire Friday afternoon. State police fire marshal James Nizinski reported 57-year-old Brenda Lee Reibsome died in the fire along Grover Drive. The home was destroyed. Crews from White Deer Township, William Cameron Engine Company, Milton, Turbot Township, Mifflinburg, Union Township, Pottsgrove and Warrior Run were summoned about 1:30pm.  According to an online media outlet, the cause of the fire is unknown.

COVID’19 NUMBERS RISING IN VALLEY

According to President and CEO, Dr. Jaewon Ryu, “We are not out of the woods.” Reports from Geisinger campuses across the region, hospitalizations are averaging upwards of 180-200 patients.  Ryu offered an update on the pandemic and took questions from the media in a virtual briefing Friday morning. According to a media source, he went on to report, the number of cases that Geisinger is treating is not decreasing as it is in other areas of the country. Currently, 95% of all Geisinger staff members are vaccinated against COVID.

NATIONAL MOVE OVER AWARENESS

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC), and the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) are reminding motorists to move over or slow down ahead Saturday was “National Move Over Awareness” Day.

Pennsylvania’s Move Over Law requires drivers approaching an emergency response area who are unable to safely merge into a lane farther away from the response area to “pass the emergency response area at a speed of no more than 20 miles per hour less than the posted speed limit and reasonable for safely passing.” Failure to move over or slow down will result in a citation that carries a fine of $500 for first-time offenders, $1,000 for a second offense, and $2,000 and a 90-day license suspension for a third or subsequent offense.

OPEN ENROLLMENT FOR MEDICARE

-The open enrollment period for Medicare has opened for Pennsylvanians and will remain open for enrollment until Dec. 7. There are several outlets and places to get questions answered. During the enrollment period, new beneficiaries to Medicare are able to sign up for Prescription Drug coverage and health plans set to complement Medicare. If you are a current Medicare beneficiary, you can review and join,  switch or drop Medicare Advantage or Prescription Drug Coverage.

$450,000 TO PENNSYLVANIA COLLEGE OF TECHNOLOGY

– Pennsylvania College of Technology is dedicating $450,000 by the  U.S. Department of Education’s Centers of Excellence for Veteran Student Success to support outreach to veteran students over the next three years. Funds are set for use to facilitate the development of new recruitment materials, training for faculty and staff, the creation of support teams for veteran students, and expanded orientation and outreach programs to increase enrollment and retention of veteran students. According to northcentralpa.com, in order to help with coordinating veteran services in the Major General Fred F Marty Veterans and Miltary Resource Center at the college, the funding will also support the new veteran services specialist position.

 

DEATH OF THE FIRST BLACK SECRETARY OF STATE

Colin Powell, the first black Secretary of State, has passed away due to complications from COVID-19. Facebook held the  statement, issued by his family.  “General Colin L. Powell, former U.S. Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, passed away this morning due to complications from Covid 19. We have lost a remarkable and loving husband, father, grandfather and a great American.” According to northcentralpa.com, Powell was 84.

STATE APPEALS COURT THROWS OUT LAWSUIT

Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports…. A state appeals court has thrown out a lawsuit challenging Gov. Tom Wolf’s vaccine-or-test requirement for prison guards, among thousands of other state employees in congregate settings.  In a Sept. 28 decision, a three-judge panel of the Commonwealth Court dismissed the challenge, brought by the Pennsylvania State Correctional Officers Association, which represents 11,000 prison workers, on technical grounds. The union had requested an injunction to block the policy. According to PSCOA President John Eckenrode, “We’re disappointed and disagree with the court’s decision.”  It applies to 25,000 state employees who work in state prisons, hospitals, centers for people with disabilities, and other similar facilities.

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